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AVON, IN-Danville, IN-based Hendricks Regional Health and the YMCA of Greater Indianapolis have joined together to build a 100,000-square-foot combined hospital and fitness center. The Hendricks Regional Health YMCA, which will cost more than $18 million to build, will go up on 29 acres along Highway 36. Mixed-use development is reportedly planned for another 42 adjacent acres.

The project is designed to provide health and wellness services to the region west of Indianapolis, said Hendricks president and CEO Dennis Dawes in a statement. “Our hospital’s mission is to improve the health of our region. Preventative care and healthy lifestyles are important components to improving health and achieving a good quality of life,” he said. Neither companies return requests for comment.

The 60,000-square-foot YMCA will include an indoor aquatics center, wellness center, dance studio, gym, teen center, child watch area, indoor climbing wall, outdoor fields, walking trails and an outdoor education center. The hospital side will provide rooms for physical and occupational therapies, cardiac rehabilitation, complete lab and x-ray services, private medical practice, sports medicine and other hospital outreach services. Eric Ellsworth, president and CEO of the YMCA, said in the statement that the partnership will provide double assistance in helping to combat obesity, pre-diabetes and other preventable chronic diseases. “(We) felt compelled to come together and help area residents live healthier lives by providing a holistic approach for better wellbeing,” he said.

The partnership plans to raise $13.5 million to help build the center, with the hospital providing $5 million. Also providing funds are the United Way of Central Indiana Capital Fund, Duke Energy and the Skillman Corp. Construction could begin in early 2009, with a projected opening date in late 2010.

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